Coach Todd Lee said last year, “..to be a good mid-major you have to be old.” The 2019-2020 Yotes were just that. While it did lead to a 20 win season, it unfortunately did not lead to success come tournament time.
This years squad will look much, much different. Familiar faces are few but most notably include Stanley Umude. Others who Yote fans will recognize Ty Chisom, Kruz Perrot-Hunt, Hunter Goodrich and Tasos Kamateros. All whom have seen limited action and shown flashes of potential.
Umude is the known guy and should at the very least be in discussion for Summit League POY. Athletically off the charts and will be someone other teams focus their defensive attention to night in and night out.
The list of fresh faces is by far the longest list and will most likely determine the fate of the 20-21 Yotes. Plitzuweit, Fuller, Dial, Anderson, Koster, Hayes, Zizic, Heiman, and Smjecanon. A mix of transfers, international players and true freshman. Who emerges as a contributor from this group will be interesting to watch.
Let’s face it. It’s 2020 and everything is weird. The lead up to the season has been weird, the schedule is weird and even if a game is scheduled 2 days from now, is there any certainty that it will actually happen? How well this group can gel and become one will be important. With the herky jerky start to practice, guys in and out with quarantine and whatnot, it will be difficult to know just what the Yotes have until we finally see them in action.
I tend to believe coaching- especially come conference season will be magnified. Seeing a team for 8 straight quarters just seems to point to which staff can make the proper adjustments during that stretch.
Personally, to make a prediction about what was gonna happen come a month from now in the year 2020 seems pointless. I would say the blue team to our north seems to be the favorite, the green school still further north seems to bring it come Summit League Tourney time, but other than that this season is a giant question mark. Which team can best embrace the challenges that are the COVID era?
Why not us? Why not the Yotes? Let’s tip it off and see what happens. Until I see them in action, I feel wholly unqualified to give anything further in depth than that.